(Pardon me for making the review that long
not really, but you’ll understand why it ended up being this long, I just couldn’t say less about this epic album)
Much is being said these days about Dark Tranquility, their newest material, album Construct was released this very week. The highly anticipated album was released 3 years after their latest work. I was also looking forward to this verily much, I have to confess, but, will it match the high expectations every one of us has when it comes to Dark Tranquility? , will these Swedish dudes amaze me once again? Read the full review to find out.
[Spoiler: They did]
Band: Dark Tranquility (Sweden).
1) For Broken Words
2) the Science of Noise
4) The Silence in Between
6) What Only You Know
7) Endtime Hearts
8) State of Trust
9) Weight of the End
10) None Becoming
Dark Tranquility teased us so much with this one album, releasing some songs here and there, streaming them, making video teasers, lyric videos and all that stuff but all I could think of was “Fucking end that shit and give me what I need”. Well, what I needed was a dose of new DT’s new album Construct. It’s just so fucking marvelous, it’s like they’ve invented another language for this album in particular, a language nobody understands yet everyone can enjoy and everyone WILL bang their heads to. Everything seems different yet so familiar, it sounds nothing alike like we’ve heard Dark Tranquility sounding like in the past, though it still retains that DT signature sound, that’s something that’s still lingering in this very little piece of gold and that’s something I dare to say they’ll never lose, and that’s no coincidence, nope, their 20+ year career is a sign how consistent as phuck they are with their music (as well as serious professionals and dedicated musicians).
It’s very different but it’s frightening how cool it really is, it’s so well produced and so well made, it’s another level, major leagues. Guitars sound so fucking crystal clear and cool, the tone is great and their job is marvelous, drums are so cool, mysterious keyboards that add that little “something” to it, adding layers and layers of depth that give its unique sound to Construct, the voice is as cool as it has always been, the only trouble I find with this is with the bass. It doesn’t amazes or surprises me all that much, but it really shines in some songs and does its job perfectly thoughout the entire album. I have to say that I’m an open Damage Done whore but this, as much as it really sounds different, doesn’t leaves me with that “This ain’t no DT” flavor in my mouth. It’s Straight up DT to your fucking face.
Some so-called “fans” claimed that, before the album was even released, they were saying this wasn’t what they were thinking when it comes to Dark Tranquility. Well, I’ll make it as fast and painless as possible, if you ever claimed that, you know shit about your Dark Tranquility. Fact.
You can find everything in this album, from slow to fast songs, ranging from melodic to not-so-melodic (at all) and everything else in between, they really know how to do it, mixing everything and different “styles” all within a song, and it doesn’t sounds weird at all. For broken words, opening track, is like this, has the speed, has the slow moments in it, has the peaks, has the climax, has the melodic passages and has it all one could expect of an album opener, more when that album opener is a Dark Tranquility album opener.
The science of noise starts with a somewhat fast drum beat and a guitar that helps it, something that becomes a total different thing in a split of a second, the guitar takes the spotlight and the drums are helping now, all of this while the keyboards and bass are building it all up, it is like that the whole album, every song is like a chameleon, it adjusts and changes completely just like that.
Uniformity is your “slow” song of the album, filled with mysticism and depth that is coming to life by the hands of the keyboards, kickass clean and guttural vocals. The thing that happens with Uniformity is that when you’re listening closely to one thing, you can hear thousands of other things happening in the back at the same time, that’s what I mean with the layers and layers of instruments, ending with a nice little guitar ostinato-like melody and cool drumming in the back.
The Silence in between amazes me with the guitar work that’s happening in the background while you’re focused with all your mighty power in the vocals, it’s a very original guitar work throughout the entire album. and just as The Silence in between ends, Apathetic starts and kicks you in the face with the opening riff and cool vocal parts that lead to a more “relaxed” passage filled with keyboard works … just to go back again to the kick ass guitar work. The guitar solo, although short and not all that shreddy, does the job immensely, it fits the song perfectly, it is nothing less and nothing more, just what the song needed.
And this album just won’t let the epicness It builds go anywhere!. What only you know, starts and you’re all “OH SHIT THEY’RE BRINGIN IN ALL THIS ONE TIME” when suddenly it changes to a whole different thing, it’s like a whole different song with clean guitars and vocals, and when you think the song will follow that path, the moment you think that, it kicks you in the nuts ‘cause it goes all in with double bass drums. It’s not like anything you’ve heard, ‘cause as much as it’s some heavy drumming, the other instruments are playing very chilly stuff, building some pretty nice ambient-sounding atmospheres.
What only you know ends fading out, just to welcome another song, my favourite of the album, Endtime Hearts.
To me, Endtime hearts is the perfect execution of instruments and vocals to really show everything they’ve got. It really shows the cohesion and rapport they have as a band and surely proves why they have been one of the bands out there with the most stable line-up ever. I really think this is the best song of the album, not because I like it verily much, but because it is really Dark Tranquility resumed in just under 4 minutes.
State of truth begins with a side of the album that wasn’t seen until this song began, arpeggios and clean vocals to build a very melodic and beautiful moment, though very pretty, very short at the same time ‘cause the DT syndrome these dudes have kick in immediately, making that little piece of beauty completely burn and then the METAL starts. That’s how the whole song is; playing between harsh and sweet throughout the 4:06 the song lasts.
Weight of the End, while being a cool track, it also reminded me how the album was about to end, it’s so unfair, this should be endless. The opening riff seems easy, but in reality it’s pretty difficult to do, my arms would melt with just attempting to play it. This track follows the same guidelines of the album. Another track that is easy to listen, but really difficult to digest.
None becoming, last track of the album (I haven’t listened to the bonus songs yet), leaves you with a feeling of craving more, which we’ll just have to wait for another album to be released, but I’m more than happy with this one, it’ll make the waiting less painful. This song has some pretty cool drumming work, with the cymbals and all, it gives its power to the track, the guitar accentuate this even further, keys give it all just one last time and vocals end up magnificently. Couldn’t ask for more of an album than what I’ve heard. Really, a job well-fucking-done.
I have to note the flawless guitar job that’s done on this album, I cannot not let that one thing go unnoticed. Obviously they shine just because they all, as a whole, build that “momentum” from scratch, the fact that the guitars shine that much is because of the effort every member in the band puts in, not just the guitars, every instrument adds immensely to the final mix, what you hear is 5 dudes that love what they do, and it shows.
Well, I think I’ve said enough for you guys that haven’t already listened and are not sure whether this fine piece of art crafted with such mastery, skill and LOVE is worth it, well, I’ll tell you is more than worthy of listening to it. Every song you hear leaves you with that accomplished feeling of learning something important on a certain day. And I really did, I discovered and learned lots just by listening (and I truly mean Listening, not hearing) You have to read between lines, it is just so much more than what you hear being played, it’s just so much more. A beauty in its own, full of depth, layers and atmospheres that leaves you begging for more.
The only thing I could complain about the album is the fact that I had to wait for so long just to listen to it in its entirely.
What a pretty nice album man. Don’t miss it for anything on earth.
Dark Tranquility are:
- Mikael Stanne
- Niklas Sundin
- Martin Henriksson
- Anders Jivarp
- Martin Brändström